WORTHING Cricket Club’s 66-run victory over Lewes Priory on Saturday saw them move joint top of Sussex League Division 2 – a position skipper Michael Gould is relishing.
Gould, who took over the role at the start of the season, has seen his side win two and draw one of their first three matches, and has praised how well the team have bonded and performed with several all-round contributions.
Worthing sit joint top with Haywards Heath and Gould said: “We want to try to stay up there. After all, we should have won all three of our games so far, when we had Glynde nine down.
“We fought very well this week, even after four changes, due to other commitments, which is fine, though, as we have good players that can come in.
“Dominic Clapp and Chris Mansell, who are both big players for Worthing, haven’t even played a game for us yet.
“The teams we have played against so far this season, seem to have two exceptional players that really pull the strings. But that’s not the case with us. It has been a whole team effort, and everyone has contributed, which is really encouraging.”
Having lost the toss and been struck in, Worthing raced away as openers Gould (63) and Ben Chambers (71 not out) put on 81 for the first wicket. Benn Challen chipped in with 18 and Andy Reid added 56 as they declared on 235-4 after 51 overs.
Lewes also started well with Omran Khan (60) and Adam Scott (34) putting on 72 for the first wicket.
Challen made the breakthrough with the ball, first taking Khan LBW, before dismissing Scott.
With those two gone, Lewes crumbled. Andy Lutwyche (3-48) and Challen (4-54), along with Luke Vinter (1-29) and a couple of run outs saw Priory crash to 169 all out after 40.5 overs.
Gould added: “We didn’t bowl great at the start, but chipped away and got the wickets.
“Myself and Ben have a good understanding with the bat. Ben is more conservative, whereas I don’t like to hang about, so it worked really well. We had about 70 off the first 10 overs.
“Andy then came in and did superbly. The top five so far have been really good, actually.
“Andy normally bats seven or eight, so to go in at four and bat how he did was brilliant.”